Saturday June 19, 2004
So I sat on my little Nokia phone the other day and broke it. Today I
went up to Norwich and popped inot Vodaphone with whom I have a longstanding
contract and asked if they would upgrade my phone. The lad said I could
have the same as the one I had just broken for free or I could have another
one or.. I could have this one with a colour screen and a little camera
in it. Well, it would be rude not to wouldn't it, I said, a free upgrade
like that. I was amazed. The fiddling about with contracts took a while
and really I just wanted to run off with it before they changed their
mind. The cable was £30 which I thought was a bit much and I am
sure I can find a cheaper one on the net. But apart from that it's a brilliant
little piece of technology. I generally have a camera nearby anyway but
from now every time I take my phone with me which is always I will have
a camera in my pocket. Really quite an amazing idea. For all these years
everyone has looked at me funny for always have a camera with me and generally
being a camera nut but over the past year or so evryone has supposed to
want to have a camera with them which has struck me as a bit odd really.
From eccentric habit to David Beckham's pocket. For me it's great though.
14th April 2004
A Week Update
it has all been superseded by blogging. I checked out a couple of photoblogs
and they seemed to be basically Photo A Week s really. So I have fiddled
with the webpages for a more bloggy sort of look and copied the blog over
to this page. Particularly like the photoblog by Martin
Taylor especially as he has some notes on old cameras such as my Canonet
28. He seems to have the same collecting strategies as myself. Cheap
11th April 2004
Why Photo A Week?
I was poking about on the Internet a rainy Saturday
afternoon a few weeks ago looking for some information about a camera
I was interested in buying on ebay. I was looking for stuff about old
Canon rangefinders, Canonets.
I found a link to pages by the leicaslacker,
Kyle Cassidy, and I spent an hour or so looking at his gallery of
images, his interesting and unusual views on photography and his rather
fine set of pictures in a photo
a week series.
These date back to January 1999 and run through to today. The first set
are very interesting. Documenting life in Philadelphia; bands, friends,
political conventions. They take a darker turn with a sequence, quite
disturbing, of a young girl Kyle befriends who appears to be self harming.
These photos catch the atmosphere and the sequencing leads you through,
He does make the point that it is more than possible to have an excessive
number of cameras but not to take a sufficiency of photographs. I take
a lot of photos but still, probably, possibly, do have too many cameras.
I intend to count them this Easter.
There are probably photo weblogs aplenty that do this I'm sure but this
is the one that made an impression on me for the photographic quality
and the discipline.
So I decided to have a go. There is a page on leicaslacker of others
doing a Photo A Week (or PAW) but most of the links don't work. Has
all this been superseded by blogs? I don't know.
Whether I can maintain a discipline of a picture every week I don't know
and I am unlikely to get a photo on here in the week I took it due to
the developing and printing time. Unless I go digital entirely and then
what will I do with this Canonet?
So I decided tos tart the New Year off properly by
sorting something out and throwing something away. The cassette collection.
when did I last play a cassette? Who does play cassettes? What is the
use of them now? So i scatter them across the kitchen table out of their
shoe boxes and other containers and start to fiddle about with them. It
doesn't take long to realise that I can't throw any of them away. They
tell a story after all. There's Stuart's handwriting on that Magazine
tape. Here is Ben's. That one was made for me by a chap at art college
and it was my introduction to Philip Glass and John Cale. How can I throw
that away? So they all go back into their shoe boxes, a few get played
on the kitchen machine and they go back in the front room.
November 12, 2003
Wooden Camera Works
After much fettling the wooden camera is now a functioning
object. I have taken a number of pictures with it over the weekend, mainly
very long indoor exposures. The weather and light has gone completely
so an outdoor exposure is now an hour or so onto Ilford VC paper and indoors
I have been leaving the shutter open all evening and into the morning
to put a bit of light into the windows. The artifical lights that are
on in the evening fill out most of the room view. I like the idea of twelve
hour exposures, the reaction happening that slowly on the paper.
Monday, October 27, 2003
Wooden Camera Disaster
I was close to putting the first piece of paper in
the new wooden camera but made a rather hamfisted attempt to put the tripod
bush on which has damaged it so I have to have another go at it.
Found these rather beautiful photographs on the web by Thomas Hudson Reeve.
The photo paper itself makes the box of the camera which makes the image.
Tuesday, October 21, 2003
Continuing adventures with a pinhole camera
The new mdf camera is coming along and should soon
be commissioned. My somewhat inadequate wood working skills have slowed
things down at times. A few details need to be sorted out tomorrow and
a new pinhole made and it should be ready.
The old cardboard one has
been taken apart and repainted and fettled over the weekend and this has
produced a better, more even image. I realise that it is possibly a bit
too wide angle and it should have had a slightly longer focal length to
get coverage over the image.
I will scan and post some more images ove rthe next few days. Also a suite
of Barnett Newman 'inspired' prints made as demos of colour printing made
at school along side Y8. And a little lino cut based on some mask images.
Wednesday, October 08, 2003
Rain Stops Play
No pinhole photgraph today due to rain and no light.
Also the cameras shutter was accidently opened all night so I may have
an image of the hallway through the gloom or I may not. A couple of images
from the camera and some notes about the camera and a photo of it, poor
thing, are on the main website.
Tuesday, October 07, 2003
Tried a longer exposure, over five minutes, which has
produced a negative with more detail to the edges so maybe I haven't been
giving them long enough exposures so far. Put a brick on top this time
so the camera didn't blow away.
Monday, October 06, 2003
Another day another pinhole photograph
Made another fine pinhole photograph outside the art
room door. Tried a longer exposure which was going well until the wind
blew the camera over. The neg is OK. The image of Aldburgh
from yesterday is a nice one.
A Rum Weekend
Not one of the great artistic weekends of my life.
I realise that this blog may break with the apparent trend for artist's
websites to be all CVs and puffs about how marvellous they are blah blah.
This one looks like the reverse.
Saturday a meeting about a local arts venue which may be fantastic or
may just not be at all, depends. I really want to like it but it just
looks like an empty shell waiting for something, hoping for something
perhaps; a cargo cult object- build this and the aeroplanes of culture
Then to a secret art sale. I arrived three minutes late and it was all
but over. I achieved the distinction of having my piece left unsold. I
was part of a very select group.
Today and yesterday I have been playing with my pinhole camera. I made
it on Friday, painted it and took pictures with it on Saturday which came
out OK. Needs some refining but interesting. Modified it this morning
and made some more images today. Made a nice one of the coast guard tower
in Aldeburgh this afternoon having been to see Richard's pictures at the
Looked through some old pictures, drawings and prints today too. Some
not too bad actually. Certainly a lot of them.
So I took the knock back really seriously then. Straight home and into
the darkroom to make some prints. In the drama about Byron this week on
the BBC 'Shelley' asked 'Byron' "Why do you write?" and Byron
drawled "Well, it's more a question of trying to stop it."